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Last Updated: Friday, 26 November, 2004, 11:58 GMT
Lyrical US judge's poetic ruling
The Beatles in a 1965 file photograph
The Beatles wrote many of the world's best-known love songs
An American judge has proved that even the law can be lyrical.

Ruling on a case of medical malpractice being heard in New York, Judge Roberto Gigante parodied one of The Beatles' most famous love songs, "Something".

On trial was doctor Gil Lederman, famous for having asked dying Beatle George Harrison, the song's author, to sign a guitar for his teenage son.

The guitar became the subject of a legal wrangle and was eventually returned to Harrison's family.

But, according to the Press Association news agency, the doctor claimed his name has been so tarnished by adverse publicity that the trial should be moved elsewhere.

Poetic justice?

The Judge agreed, pronouncing his ruling "with apologies to the late George Harrison" thus:

"Something in the folks he treats

Attracts bad press like no other doctor

He's in our jurisdiction now

He gets Beatle autographs somehow

And all I have to do is move this trial

Somewhere they don't know George Harrison

If this case I were to keep

Defendant would gently weep."

The case has now been moved to the New York state capital, Albany.

The family who are taking Dr Lederman to court have protested, calling the decision "offensive" and saying they will appeal against the ruling.

Their lawyer, Steven North, pointed out: "I think they know George Harrison in Albany too."

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